When you think about calls to action on your website, you typically think about landing pages. For example, your donation page, or your email sign-up form.
But how often do you think about the calls to action in the blog posts you’re publishing each week?
Before we get into the nitty gritty, let’s get one thing straight:
The only one purpose for your website is to encourage people to act. Whether it’s making a donation, joining your email list, signing a petition, or changing a habit, the purpose of your website is to encourage actions.
Here are six simple ways to improve the calls to actions that exist with in your blog posts:
1. Be clear about your objective
What do you want your reader to do? Do you want them to subscribe to your email list? Share a petition with their friends? And what’s the most likely action they’ll take? The more clear you are about what you want them to do, the better.
2. Know the difference between an FYI and a CTA
There are two reasons for linking text in your blog post. You either want to provide more information about the particular idea (FYI), or you want them to take action (CTA).
FYI links help keep your blog posts short and concise by linking to additional information instead of including it in the blog post. For example, rather than explaining what anchor text is, I can simply link to a definition. I don’t need to make a big deal about calling your attention to that information; I can just provide a link within the text.
CTA links lead the reader to the place where you want them to take action. This is where you DO want to make a big deal. Make a point of explicitly calling out the CTA. For example, “Click here to sign the petition.”
3. Optimize How You Target Links
Links open in one of two ways:
Generally speaking you want to FYI links to open in a new window, and CTA links to open in the same window. This way, you direct the reader down the path you want them to take.
If they click on a CTA link, you want them to keep going, with no other options. If they click on an FYI link, you keep them on your blog post so that they can still click the CTA.